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College of Architecture, Planning and Design



University's 2014-2015 Coffman chair values storytelling, technology in lecture classes

It takes a passionate storyteller to engage students in subjects that may be considered monotonous.

Mick Charney, associate professor of architecture in Kansas State University's College of Architecture, Planning & Design, is such a storyteller. He is the university's 2014-2015 Coffman chair for distinguished teaching scholars.

"I have an opportunity to open students' eyes to worlds of wisdom and an infinite cosmos of possibilities," Charney said. "I claim a moment in time that can impact the rest of their lives — personally and professionally."

The Coffman chair for distinguished teaching scholars was created in 1995 to highlight Kansas State University's commitment to excellence in undergraduate teaching and learning. A faculty member acknowledged as a leading teaching scholar is appointed to the chair for one academic year, but all who are selected retain the title of university distinguished teaching scholar throughout their careers.

Through storytelling, Charney enjoys watching students develop a true appreciation for history.

"I have been granted permission to teach introductory architectural history classes to large groups of first-year students," Charney said. "How can anyone go wrong teaching a subject that is so intrinsically bound with all the diversity, drama and delight that is the story of the human condition?"

Charney embraces digital technology and social media in the classroom without abandoning traditional methods of instruction. As Coffman chair, he will investigate methods to rehabilitate and resuscitate the large lecture course format so that it continues to be an effective and meaningful educational experience.

In addition to dozens of teaching conference presentations, Charney recently was invited by Lilly Conferences to author several short articles for its upcoming blog. The titles of the essays hint at the range of activities that he regularly incorporates into his large lecture classes: "Embracing students' digital devices," "Music as a mechanism to engage students" and "Using word clouds to reveal (and break through) cognitive barriers."

Charney's previous awards and honors include the Lorrie Ryan Memorial Award for Outstanding Poster from the National Lilly Conference in 2013, Honorary Walt Disney Imagineer in 2010, the university's Presidential Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching in 2005 and the university's Conoco Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award in 1994.

He has a bachelor's degree in architectural studies with highest honors from the University of Illinois, a Master of Architecture with honors from the University of Illinois and a doctorate in art history from Northwestern University. He joined Kansas State University as an assistant professor in 1987 and became an associate professor in 1989.

Four of a kind: Interior architecture & product design professor completes book series on design

MANHATTAN — Kansas State University's Donna Fullmer hasn't just written the book about the design process — she's written the series.

The assistant professor of interior architecture & product design just released "Presentation Basics," the fourth book for her Studio Companion Series published by Fairchild Hall.

Fullmer said "Presentation Basics" helps students hone both of the critical aspects of successful presentation: visual and verbal skills. The book also takes a look at business etiquette and body language, stressing the impact of these factors on a presentation.

Other books in Fullmer's series include "Design Basics," released in 2012; "Drafting Basics," 2012; and "3D Design," 2013. Fullmer said each book was developed for today's student and presents material in a contemporary and graphic manner.

"Students learn differently today than they did a few years ago. They needed something that was short and concise," she said.

Fullmer is excited about the response to her books, especially from students.

"It was such an awesome moment when I saw the tools and lessons I was using to teach my students being used by others," she said. "I had originally imagined that the books would be used by professors; I didn’t expect to see students using the books to teach each other. That's when I knew I was doing something right."

Fullmer may consider adding books to her series in a few years.

"The books are being adopted into architecture programs all over the United States right now," she said. "In a few years after we have some feedback from the schools and the publisher, there may be an addition to the series, or an entirely new series."

Certified by the National Council for Interior Design Qualified, Fullmer is a professional member of the Interior Design Educators Council, International Interior Design Association and Glass Arts Society. She graduated from Kansas State University in 1991 with a Bachelor of Interior Architecture and received a master's in integrated professional studies from DePaul University. She has worked for large, nationally ranked full-service design firms across the Midwest, where her work focused on commercial interiors specifically in office, restaurant and theater design. She also has taught freshman core classes to graduate-level courses.

Her creative endeavors include art glass design, including stained glass, fused and slumped glass, and blown glass. She has a small studio on campus where she and her students create pieces that can be integrated into their product and furniture projects or simply be objects of art.

William T. Kemper Foundation gives $1 million boost to Seaton Complex

By Hayli Morrison

The Kansas City, Missouri-based William T. Kemper Foundation has made a gift of $1 million to the College of Architecture, Planning & Design (APDesign) at Kansas State University to support the Seaton Complex revitalization and expansion.

With expected groundbreaking in fall 2015, the $75 million project will renovate 80,000 square feet of Seaton Hall and add 114,000 square feet of new construction. The building will include consolidated fabrication capabilities, integrated design labs, collaborative spaces and a 300-seat auditorium. In recognition of the gift, the exterior amphitheatre will be named the William T. Kemper Foundation Amphitheatre. Upon completion, the amphitheatre will serve as a public gathering place for students, faculty and visitors to interact outdoors.

Kemper, a 1926 University of Missouri graduate, was a well-known civic leader in Kansas City. His 52-year career in banking included top positions in Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma.

“The William T. Kemper Foundation is delighted to support the expansion and renovation of Seaton Complex,” said Office Director Beth A. Radtke. “With greatly enhanced facilities, APDesign will at last have classrooms, studios, fabrication labs and a gallery space commensurate with the superior quality of the education inside. This important project will help to ensure that APDesign continues to attract the best and brightest students and faculty well into the future.”

“We are deeply grateful for the William T. Kemper Foundation’s generous show of support for the Seaton Complex revitalization and expansion, a project that will bring our learning environment in line with our exceptional national reputation,” said Timothy de Noble, dean of APDesign. “Design aesthetic and environmental stewardship are foremost in our mind throughout this process, to align with the principles we teach. The William T. Kemper Foundation Amphitheatre touches on both those elements, as heretofore our students have not had an attractive central outdoor gathering space they could call their own.”

Philanthropic contributions to K-State are coordinated by the Kansas State University Foundation. The foundation staff works with university partners to build lifelong relationships with alumni, friends, faculty, staff and students through involvement and investment in the university.

About the William T. Kemper Foundation - Commerce Bank, Trustee

The William T. Kemper Foundation, established in 1989, honors Mr. Kemper’s life-long interest in improving the human condition and quality of life. The Kemper Foundation focuses its giving on education, health and human services, the arts and civic improvements.

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